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Postpartum Depression Health Center

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What Happens

Symptoms of postpartum depression start in the weeks to months after childbirth, miscarriage, or stillbirth.

In some cases, symptoms peak after slowly building for 3 or 4 months.

Recommended Related to Postpartum Depression

Understanding Postpartum Depression -- Symptoms

Symptoms of postpartum depression (PDD) can be divided into three categories: Postpartum blues ("baby blues"): Very short in duration, may not require formal treatment but supportive care only. Postpartum depression: Lasts longer, is more debilitating, and requires medical care. Postpartum psychosis: Most severe form, requires aggressive psychiatric care. There are many possible symptoms of postpartum depression, including the following: Inability to sleep or...

Read the Understanding Postpartum Depression -- Symptoms article > >

Postpartum depression makes it hard for you to function well. This includes caring for and bonding with your baby.

In rare cases, dangerous postpartum psychosis symptoms can occur within the first few postpartum weeks, as soon as a few days after childbirth.

Early treatment counts

Early treatment is important for you, your baby, and the rest of your family. The sooner you start, the more quickly you will recover. And there's less chance that your depression will affect your baby. Babies of depressed mothers might be less attached to their mothers and might lag behind developmentally in behavior and mental ability.

For more information about who is more likely to have postpartum depression, see What Increases Your Risk.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 16, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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